How to Install a Portable Air Conditioner in a Garage With No Windows
A windowless garage can become almost unusable, especially in the summer heat. However, installing a portable air conditioner can make your garage cooler. Here is what you should know about installing a portable AC in a windowless garage:
How Much Ventilation Does a Garage Need?
Before buying an air conditioner unit for your garage, it’s best to consider how much time you spend in the space and how cold you need it to get. For example, if you barely venture out in the garage or only use it for deep storage, you can consider getting a portable or temporary system to make your garage cooler once in a while.
On the contrary, if you spend a lot of time in your garage, you’ll want to find a more permanent solution to make it bearable. Additionally, if you use your garage to store valuables sensitive to temperature or humidity, you might want to invest in a great garage air conditioning system.
How Do You Vent a Garage Without Windows?
Working in a garage with inadequate ventilation, especially in the summer heat, can be very unpleasant. It’s particularly unpleasant in countries where the summers are very hot, although it can also be unpleasant in cooler climates with no airflow.
Windows not only provide fresh air, but they also give extra light, which is very helpful since most garages are usually dark.
There are various ways to vent a garage that has no windows. Some methods are more affordable than others; therefore, it’s best to decide how much ventilation you need and how much you’re willing to spend and consider these options:
Try a Ceiling Fan
If you opt for a ceiling fan in your windowless garage, choose an industrial one instead of a residential one as it will last longer. An industrial one will also deal with debris and dust, especially if your garage doubles as a workplace.
Encourage Airflow From Your House
If your house has a good cooling system connected to your garage, you can try to ventilate that cool air into the garage.
It’s best to understand that directing your cool home air into the garage will make your home slightly warmer; however, the slight discomfort in your house can be the difference between a bearable and unbearable garage temperature.
Open the Door
Opening your garage door is the most obvious and affordable way of venting your windowless garage, especially if the weather conditions are suitable. This method will cool the garage down if a breeze comes in through the door.
If you have a second door for people to walk through, you’ll find that opening both doors creates a draught, making working in the garage more pleasant.
Add a Garage Exhaust Fan
Garage exhaust fans come in many different styles; those that stand on the floor and can be moved around to a convenient place and those that are mounted on the wall through an opening. If you opt for the ones mounted on the wall, you will have some construction to do.
Vent the Roof
If you don’t have enough space for an air conditioner or knocking a window into the garage is not an option, you could consider making some vents on the garage’s roof. The vent lets hot air out as the heat rises.
It’s best to install the vent in the highest place on the roof to ensure that the garage has better ventilation as hot air escapes and the cooler air takes its place.
Try a Dehumidifier
It’s best to consider lowering the humidity in your garage to make it more comfortable because high humidity often traps heat, making it feel hotter than it is.
Lower humidity is also crucial to climate control, especially if you want to store delicate items without worrying about rust, mildew, and other moisture-related issues.
A dehumidifier will remove moisture and make your garage more comfortable; however, it won’t blow out cold air like a portable AC venting option. Therefore, combining a dehumidifier with fans or other cooling options is best.
Get a Window AC Unit for the Wall
You can still use a traditional window unit in a windowless garage; however, you’ll have to cut a hole in the wall to install it. This process requires you to know how to handle a reciprocating saw and that you can frame the opening to install an air conditioning unit with stability for proper exhaust ventilation.
If you can handle all the work, this method is inexpensive to vent a smaller garage.
Install a Mini Split Air Conditioner
Mini split air conditioners are designed to be installed in the wall and require no ductwork since the ventilation system goes through the wall to the outside. The AC works like a central air unit with an outdoor compressor but doesn’t take up any room in your yard because the whole unit is contained in the wall apparatus.
Mini split air conditioners can be quite pricey and are best installed by a pro; however, they’re a convenient solution if you can afford them.
Can I Put a Portable AC in My Garage?
You can opt for a portable AC venting option if you don’t have space to install an air conditioner through a wall or in a window.
Having a portable AC means that you can move it around if need be. However, you will have to drill some holes for ventilation. It’s also best to remember that portable air conditioners put out a ton of heat and are less efficient on electricity. You will need some insulation to keep the cool air in.
While a portable AC is good for garage cooling, the garage won’t stay cool for long without a garage attic or garage door insulation. In addition, you might spend a lot of money on electricity by running the portable AC for long periods.
Can You Install a Portable Air Conditioner Without a Window?
Portable air conditioners are often associated with through window exhaust vents. More than 80% of people who buy a portable AC unit install the exhaust vent out of the window.
The out-the-window installation is so popular that many producers often give you a free window seal kit for portable air conditioners. However, it might be impossible to vent your portable AC out of the window in some situations.
Venting a portable air conditioner is more difficult without a window but not impossible. Here are some portable ac venting options in a windowless room or garage:
Install a Portable AC Vent Through the Wall
Your room or garage might be windowless, but it certainly has walls. So if you can’t vent a portable air conditioner through the window, you can do it through the wall.
Most rooms do not have 6-diameter holes in their walls; therefore, if you want to install a portable AC unit, you’ll have to make a hole yourself. However, if you own a power drill and are a DIY enthusiast, you can drill a hole in the wall. The diameter of the hole should be the same as the hose that vents the portable AC.
Drilling through the wall is best for single-hose portable air conditioners. Two- hose portable air conditioners are more energy-efficient; however, drilling too many holes in the wall might be a lot of work.
Before starting the drill, ensure that you choose the right wall for the vent. For example, only a professional can drill through reinforced steel walls.
The best scenario for a windowless room or garage is to vent a portable air conditioner through a thin wall made of low-density concrete.
Vent a Portable AC Unit Through the Door
Door venting is the most common way of venting a portable air conditioner without a window. However, where the doors lead is important for this option. For example, if the door leads to a hallway or another room, you might have difficulty getting the required temperature difference to make the air conditioner effective.
On the other hand, if you have a balcony door, you can vent the air conditioner directly outdoors.
Vent Your Portable AC Through the Dryer Vent
If you’re using a dryer vent, you can use the same hole to install a hose and vent a portable air conditioner without a window.
The best part is that you can use most window seals for portable AC units to vent a dryer. The downside of using this method is that you’re conditioning the air in the room with a dryer, and that’s usually not a bedroom, living room, or any other room where you would need cooler air.
If you opt for this method, buying a longer hose is the best solution. For example, you can get a longer hose, install it through the dryer vent hole, and connect it with the portable AC in the living room or hallway.
If you have a drop ceiling in a windowless room, you can vent a portable air conditioner through the ceiling. It’s best to remember that a drop ceiling is a requirement in this case. Most modern houses don’t have them, but they’re mostly found in high-ceiling older houses.
Using a specialized drop ceiling venting kit, you can install the venting hose. The kit can extend the hose length by as much as 10 feet and are universal since they fit any portable air conditioner.
Vent the Portable AC Through an Unused Chimney
You can vent a portable AC in a windowless room through a chimney. You can easily eliminate the warm air produced in your air conditioner by piping it through the chimney.
For safety reasons, you must ensure that the chimney is not in use. It would help if you never tried venting a portable AC through a fully functional chimney or fireplace since you’ll be exposing yourself to many risks.
If you do not use the fireplace, consider placing the AC unit inside it, right beneath the chimney. Then, you can attach the vent hose inside the chimney walls to channel hot air up the chimney. You can even extend the hosepipe further up to exhaust heat efficiently.
Venting a portable air conditioner without a window can be challenging. However, your creativity and tips above should help you set up a portable air conditioner for a garage without windows.